I haven’t been feeling my usual self lately. I’ve been feeling tired and sluggish. I’ve got muscle aches. I checked in with my family doctor who reminded me what I already know.
I don’t move enough. Blogging is a very sedentary lifestyle and I’ve put on some weight. And honestly, I do not like to sweat. I know that more movement will make me feel good – both mentally and physically – and yet, it’s not enough to motivate me to do it.
After thinking about the conversation I had with my doctor, I immediately started brainstorming things I could do about my weight gain and inactivity.
And I found myself considering committing a cheapskate sin: Throwing money at the problem.
I contemplated joining a gym (again). I lingered over the Weight Watchers website (again). I considered buying some new fitness DVDs. I drooled over fancy new treadmills, ellipticals and recumbent exercise bikes.
Every solution that I thought of involved me throwing money at the problem (and in some cases, A LOT of money).
Fortunately, I resisted the temptation. I put the wallet away and thought about all of the resources that I have available to me.
I have good walking shoes. I have an old exercise bike and an ancient treadmill. I have some weights. I have resistance bands, an exercise ball, a yoga mat, and about a dozen exercise DVDs. I have a regular bike (for when the snow melts). I have a Wii with several Wii fitness games. I have an iPhone with access to free apps like My Fitness Pal. I have access to plenty of diet and exercise videos and books through my computer and my public library.
I have no reason to spend any money on this issue. So why was I so quick to go down that path?
I realized I was quick to consider spending money because I wanted a quick fix. I wanted the magic bullet that would solve the problem. I wanted to make the purchase and be done with it.
And I think that’s a pretty normal reaction for a lot of us. We toss and turn at night, so we must need a new mattress. We feel kind of sloppy, so we need a new outfit to feel better. We’re bored during the long winter, so we need to plan a vacation to a southern locale. We get manicures or massages or haircuts to make us feel better.
What you’ll discover is that spending money to address issues like these is nothing but a band-aid fix. If you’re not addressing the real root of the problem, nothing will change.
I could spend $2,000 on fitness equipment and workout clothes and it wouldn’t make me thin and healthy. Why? Because I need to DO THE WORK involved in getting healthy.
I could spend money on vacations and clothes and massages and a it wouldn’t take long for me to return to feeling lousy. Why? Because I’m not addressing the root cause of my stress.
So instead of spending money on my problems, I’m going to get to the heart of the issues. I’m going to create a plan for slow and steady improvement.
It is the same strategy my husband and I used to get out of debt, and it works.
I just need to begin.